U.S. Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA)
March 11, 2021 | Written by GreenSoft Technology, Inc.
EPA Extends Deadline for New TSCA PBT Restriction Impacting Electronics Producers
180-Day No Action Assurance for Restrictions on PIP (3:1)
On January 6 the Untied States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) passed final rules banning or restricting five persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic (PBT) substances, most with only 60 days’ notice.
Unlike prior actions taken by the EPA under the US Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), which largely applied only to the production, processing, and importing of chemicals, these new rules include restrictions on substances present in products (articles).
The new TSCA restrictions are:
- Decabromodiphenyl ether (DecaBDE)
- Phenol, isopropylated phosphate (3:1) (PIP (3:1))
- 2,4,6-Tris(tert-butyl)phenol (2,4,6-TTBP)
- Hexachlorobutadiene (HCBD)
- Pentachlorothiophenol (PCTP)
Of the above five substances addressed in the recent final rules, one specific substance, Isopropylated Phosphate (3:1) (PIP 3:1), has been found to be commonly used in electronic equipment.
The electronics industry was alarmed when the EPA provided only 60 days to eliminate this substance from their supply chains, and immediately requested a delay in implementation or enforcement leading up to the March 8 deadline.
On March 8, 2021, in response to industry requests, the EPA announced a 180-day No Action Assurance for processing and distributing in commerce of PIP (3:1) for use in articles, including in PIP (3:1)-containing articles. This means companies can continue to import, distribute, and process articles containing PIP 3:1 until September 4, 2021. However, this guarantee of non-enforcement only applies to PIP 3:1 for use in or contained in articles, and does not apply to any other users of PIP 3:1 or the other four restricted PBT compounds listed above.
The EPA has also opened a new 60-day comment period, allowing companies and other industry stakeholders to provide comments on the PBT restrictions. Companies who feel more than 180 days is needed to address PIP 3:1 in their products are encouraged to provide a comment to the EPA.
While the 180-day delay in enforcement of the PIP 3:1 restriction in articles provides some immediate relief, companies should begin collecting data on the presence of all five PBT substances in their products as soon as possible. The clock is ticking to confirm compliance, and allow for PIP 3:1 to be eliminated from the products prior to the September 4 deadline if found to be present in any parts or materials of the product.
GreenSoft Technology can help with TSCA PBT compliance
The EPA has put the industry on notice that TSCA is no longer targeting chemicals themselves; the regulation is now placing restrictions on articles. Companies need to track EPA/TSCA activity and ensure they have the data needed to ensure compliance.
GreenSoft Technology helps manage this process for companies, by performing data collection, data validation, substance calculations and report generation as part of our TSCA PBT data services. GreenSoft’s industry-proven data collection and validation process will ensure you have all the data needed to demonstrate full compliance with EPA PBT restrictions and prohibitions.
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